Sallie Mae Private Student Loans at a Glance

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Highlights


  • Sallie Mae offers 8 private student loans.
  • Apply for deferment or forbearance if you cannot afford your payments.
  • Consider a student loan consolidation.
4.5
/5.0
(9 Votes)

Learn if Sallie Mae's 8 Private Student Loan Types Are Right For You, Plus How to Ask For Deferment & Forbearance.

SLM Corp., also known as Sallie Mae, was the US’s largest originator of federal student loans until 2010 when the Dept. of Education started originating federal student loans itself. Sallie Mae now services federal student loans on behalf of the Dept. of Education, and originates private student loans. Sallie Mae employs 8,000 people, and manages more than $180 billion in debt for more than 10 million student loan borrowers. The company was originally created in 1972 as a government-sponsored enterprise (GSE) and privatized its operations in 2004. Sallie Mae also originates and services private student loans.

As this was written in late 2011, Sallie Mae offers eight private student loans:

Loan Name Intended Borrower & Purpose Amount Available Fees Rate & Term
Source: Sallie Mae, December 2011.
Smart Option Student Loan Must attend degree-granting eligible school and be enrolled in eligible program.1 Up to 100% of school-certified education costs. None 10 years. LIBOR + 2.00% (2.25% APR) to LIBOR + 9.88% (9.37% APR)1
Career Training Smart Option Student Loan Non-degree-granting institution with a planned term for enrollment of approximately one academic year. Up to 100% of school-certified education costs. Up to 5% 9 years. LIBOR + 7.75% (APR 8.00%) to LIBOR + 12.50% (13.76% APR)
Medical Residency & Relocation Loan Enrolled in final year of study at an allopathic or osteopathic school of medicine and expect to be awarded M.D. or D.O. degree during the same academic year of application. $1,000 up to $15,000 None LIBOR + 3.00% (3.21% APR) to LIBOR + 11.88% (11.57% APR)
Dental Residency & Relocation Loan Expect to be awarded D.D.S. degree during the same academic year of application. $1,000 up to $15,000 None LIBOR + 3.00% (3.21% APR) to LIBOR + 11.88% (11.57% APR)
Global Health Residency & Relocation Loan Enrolled in final year of study at an allopathic or osteopathic school of medicine and expect to be awarded M.D. or D.O. degree during the same academic year of application. $1,000 up to $15,000 None LIBOR + 3.00% (3.21% APR) to LIBOR + 11.88% (11.57% APR)
Bar Study Loan Enrolled in final year at an ABA-accredited law school, or graduated within last 12 months, and sitting for the bar exam no later than 12 months after graduation. $1,000 up to $15,000 0.00% or 5.00% 15 years. LIBOR + 5.00% (5.24% APR) to LIBOR + 13.00% (14.01% APR)
K-12 Family Education Loan Student enrolled of an eligible K-12 school. 100% the cost of a child's education. 0.00% or 3.00% 3 years. LIBOR + 7.00% (7.25% APR) to LIBOR + 11.50% (13.82% APR)
Tutorial Financing Loan Student enrolled at an eligible tutoring and learning center. Variable. 0.00% to 5.00% Variable term. LIBOR + 7.00% (7.25% APR) to LIBOR + 13.50% (APR 15.30%)
1Loans available at a higher rate for non-degree schools.

Sallie Mae and Student Loan Collections

If you cannot afford to repay your Sallie Mae student loan, you have options to avoid default (non-payment). Before reading any further, learn if your loan is federally insured (the US government is guaranteeing repayment of the loan), or private. If your loan is FFEL, Perkins, or Direct, it is federal. If the Sallie Mae loan is federally insured, Sallie Mae must follow federal rules for student loan collections. See the Bills.com resource Default on Federal Student Loan to learn more about your rights, options, and liabilities as the borrower of a federal student loan.

If you cannot afford your Sallie Mae student loan payments and your situation is temporary, login to your Sallie Mae account, select the Postpone Payments section, and request a deferment. Some Sallie Mae loans also allow forbearance. If your income is reduced, Sallie Mae will also negotiate a reduced monthly payment. The Sallie Mae Postponing payments page outlines these options.

If the Sallie Mae loan is private, then Sallie Mae will follow the borrower’s state laws and the rules in the loan contract the borrower signed. Private student loans are similar to unsecured debt. If the borrower defaults on a private student loan, the creditor or collection agency must sue in civil court to collect. If it wins a judgment, the creditor or collection agency can garnish wages, place a lien against property, or a levy financial accounts. The only thing that separates a private student loan from other unsecured debt, such as credit card debt, is that private student loans are not dischargeable in a bankruptcy filing, generally speaking.

Student Loan Consolidation

A student loan consolidation may help by increasing the term length, thereby lowering the monthly payment. There are basically two types of consolidation loans — unsecured and secured. To learn more about unsecured student loan consolidation, see the Bills.com Student Loan Consolidation page.

If you are a homeowner with equity in your home, a debt consolidation loan secured on your home may also be an option, though you should be careful before you borrow money against your home to pay off these Sallie Mae loans. You would be converting what was previously unsecured debt into secured debt. This could cause problems in the future if you are unable to make your mortgage payments. To explore this alternative, you can apply with Bills.com’s network of providers by applying at the Bills.com mortgage refinance form.

4.5
/5.0
(9 Votes)

61 Comments

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  • 35x35
    Dec, 2011
    Keith
    If you reside in Pennsylvania but earn wages in another state would the garnishment rules fall under the state you earned wages or the state (PA) you live in?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2011
      Bill
      The garnishment would depend on the place where the court judgement was given. If the lawsuit was in Pennsylvania, then PA laws would govern the wage garnishment rules. If the court judgment was done in the place of work, then those laws would apply. The creditor can domesticate the lawsuit to another state. I suggest that you speak with an attorney, as only an attorney can properly dispense legal advice. Also, work with your creditors or seek debt relief, to avoid a wage garnishment.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2011
    Kathy
    I recently filed for Chapter 13 due to my house being underwater and significant credit card debt incurred while in Grad school. I am in an 80/20 loan on my house and I am able to strip the 2nd loan and discharge my credit card debt. I will be left with 250k in school loan debt. I have every intention of continuing with the payments while in the chapter 13 as the interest is ridiculous. I have one large loan that I consolidated into the IBR plan and two private loans. Am i penalized for any payments made to my school loan debt while in the chapter 13? What if I pay off one of the smaller private loans while in the chapter 13, am I penalized for that?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Nov, 2011
      Bill
      Consult with your bankruptcy lawyer before you start paying-off debts. Debtors may not favor one creditor over others that are in the same class.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2011
    Cathleen
    Thank you for the helpful information and yes if you wouldn't mind I would greatly appreciate a referal to a bankruptsy attorney that you recommend. Thank you!
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Nov, 2011
      Bill
      See the Bills.com resource How to Find A Lawyer for my best advice on finding the right lawyer for your needs.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2011
    Cathleen
    Hi Bill, I am trying to get on the right track but am finding it hard to know where to start. I have run into significant economic difficultly I owe money to everyone it seems. I am debating on filing for bankruptsy, however, I also have student loans that I will need to consolidate and soon. I don't know what I should do first....or at all! I need help! Please point me in the right direction....
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Nov, 2011
      Bill
      See the Bills.com Debt Coach for a no-cost, no-nonsense analysis of your situation. Debt Coach explains the pros and cons of your options, and the costs for each.
      1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2012
      jenna
      I am trying how to find the amount I owe Sallie mae and The total amount I owe for student loans. All the web sites keep referring me to another
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2012
      Bill
      There is not a single Web site tallying all student loan information for both private and federal student loans that I am aware of. To learn about your federal loans, login to the Dept. of Education's National Student Loan Data System for Students (NSLDS). To learn more about your private loans, contact your lender(s) or servicer(s).
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2012
      rebee
      go to www.annualcreditreport.com you will get 3 ...equifax/transunion & expeiron try to copy them out & u also can dispute any items & there u will see ur payments & balances. i seen mine & this is robbery!! is the state of new jersey broke? I DON'T THINK SO ! not with the interest they are charging us!!! i owe 1500 for the past 3 years its down to 1497 wow nj thank you!! i will do my social work in pa or delaware
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    Deb
    Interest rates are at record lows. The U.S. government guarantees student loans through SallieMae. If the U.S. truly does want to promote education; help those who have made the commitment and graduated from college. Allow us to consolidate our student loans at these record low interest rates.
    1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    monica
    I think we should have a campaign to NOT take loans from Sallie Mae, and help each other pay off one debt at a time.
    9 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2011
    Ki
    I have over $150K in debt by Sallie Mae private loan and another lender. I have decided to take classes part time to get them off my back. Do you think there will be any laws coming in to help us with this debt? I realize that there is no bankruptcy that you can do to lower or delete them. So what can be done? Just try to survive paying them?
    1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Sep, 2011
      Bill
      I doubt Congress will take any significant action soon regarding student loan debt. Call me cynical, but Congress is deadlocked on fundamental fiscal issues affecting everyone. People struggling with student loans are not, as yet, a vocal enough group to capture national attention. The next question becomes what do you want Congress to do with delinquent student loans?
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2010
    Anne: Florida state law extends the FDCPA to original creditors as well as collection agents. This means that original creditors are subject to the FDCPA when dealing with Florida residents. Sallie Mae must follow the rules set forth in the FDCPA when attempting to collect on a Florida resident's delinquent account.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2010
    Anne: In many states, the original creditor is subject to the FDCPA. See the Bills.com resource Collection Laws & Exemptions by State to see if you reside in one of those states.
    1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      Anne
      My question is: Is a Sallie Mae loan not subject to the Fair Debt Collections Act, as stated by my attorney? Florida is subject to FDCPA from my research. Is Sallie Mae exempt from this?
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2010
    Heather
    Hi I took out a private student loan from sallie mae with a co-signer for $16,000. I was paying my bill with no problems $365 a month then I got pregnant My baby was due in Jan I called sallie mae in Dec. I asked if there was any way I could defer my payments or work something out with them for when I had to take a leave of absence from work. The employee I talked to said to go online and print off a deferment form send it in and then I wouldnt have to make a payment for two months. So I did, then a week later a lady called and asked why I sent that form in and I explained what was going on and she said I filled out the wrong form. She mailed me some other forms I filled them out sent them in. Then someone else called asking what I was trying to do. After explaining to that person they put a supervisor on that person told me that we had to pay two months payments before it will take affect so I paid them 365 secound week of jan and the fourth week of jan (baby was already here by then) thinking the payment we sent in last week of jan would go towards feb's payment. Well then I get a letter in mail middle of feb saying i was behind on my payments. I called talked to another supervisor and they told me that the last payment we sent in did not count towards feb's payment cause we paid it in jan. So we sent in another 365. Come april (we are now behind on rent with just one income coming in) I get another letter saying we are behind two months. I called spoke to another supervisor told them that I filled out the deferment papers and that I wasnt suppose to owe anything for two months they said that they dont have any type of deferment plans or any type of help they could have offered me and magically half the money I put in disappeared. I have not paid them a cent since then it has been two years now I have no income coming in and my hubby is doing his best to support a family of 4. They say I owe over $60,000. Also the school I attended said if you do not complete 4 classes or drop out before you complete them you get a full refund or if you complete up to 6 classes and drop out you get 1/2 refund. That was a lie. I dropped out during my 5th class. I think sallie mae scams people. We ask for help so we dont get behind and they give you the run around and lie to you and say they cant do anything about it. Oh and to top things off they started calling my grandparents and telling them they had to pay my bill and they werent even the co-signer dont know how they got there number cause they live a state away from me isn't that against the law and they still to this day call my grandparents for money. My grandparents have not signed or done anything that would link them to my bill I think they should let us file these loans under bankruptcy. How long will this be on my credit report for the rest of my life?
    2 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2010
      Bill
      Delinquent federal student loans can be reported on a credit report indefinitely, i.e., for as long as they are delinquent. Private student loans follow the same rules as regular consumer debt, i.e., 7 years from the date of first delinquency. Regarding your grandparents, are you certain they were not co-signatories on your loan? I find it unfathomable Sallie Mae would contact a relative regarding your delinquent debt unless the relative was on the loan documents. If your grandparents were not co-signatories, then I suggest you contact an attorney in your state who has experience in consumer law because you have a cause of action against Sallie Mae for violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Sallie Mae broke the law when it disclosed the delinquency of your debt to a third party without your authorization.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      Anne
      I asked my attorney to intervene for me when I received threatening and abusive calls from a Collection Agency regarding my daughter's Sallie Mae Signature Loan, for which I co-signed. My attorney said this in an email to me today. "A Sallie Mae debt is not dischargeable in bankruptcy and is not subject to the fair debt collection act". Neither the abusive Collections Agent nor my attorney will answer any questions relative to the loan. The Collections Agent has offered a settlement monthly amount with no details as to term of the loan, interest rate and interest calculation. I have repeatedly asked for this. My attorney urged my daughter to "call" the Collections Agent and accept the offer. However as I pointed out to the attorney, my daughter cannot call the 888 number as she resides in a different country. My daughter had set up a monthly payment plan with Sallie Mae in her new country of residence. Unfortunately, through Sallie Mae's incompetence, out of date files, and random debiting of $1 amounts, my daughter's bank stopped the direct debits. Despite numerous and frustrating attempts to correct this situation with Sallie Mae, nothing was done. I received the Collection Agency's letter which stated I had 30 days from the date of the letter to dispute the amount. The same day I received that letter, I was in the process of responding when I received the first in a series of abusive, threatening phone calls from a man representing the Agency. I believe that all these letters to you ought to also be directed to Elizabeth Warren who is spearheading the new Consumer Financial Protection Agency to protect people from these unscrupulous companies.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Danielle
    Sallie Mae said they could not consolidate my loans although when I took out the loans they were public lenders. I am now paying 42% interest on 6 loans and am going to be in the poor house when I am done. I have called Sallie Mae multiple times and all they do is give you the number for Direct Lending, which they cannot do anything for someone with a private loan. I need options, this is ridiculous that there is no cap on how much interest you can charge one person. Any idea of what I can do! Word of advice to anyone who reads this... Stay far far away from Sallie!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Bill
    See the Bills.com resource Student Loan Payment to learn your options for handling either a federal or private student loan. Ask follow-up any questions you may have on that page.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Kara
    I am in a similar situation with Sallie Mae and my signature loans. Originally I thought I was clever because I took my loans out one semester at a time to avoid extra interest on my spring term and summer loans. However, this is really working to my disadvantage today. In total, I have 13 small loans, together a little under $150,000 including all the accumulated interest and late fees. Sallie Mae refuses to consolidate with me because “We just don’t do that anymore.” I owe so much that no other bank will give me a consolidation loan. Sallie Mae has given me two options; 1) forbearance, that’s $150 each time, which doesn’t go towards anything and they told me the loans have to be delinquent first. This is where I’m really stressing out because I’ll get a late fee on each loan. Last month that was $396!! Makes me want to cry! 2)they’ll let me pay only the interest for two years which is almost $800/mo. I cannot afford that. I work full time and my total monthly income is approximately $1300/mo. After I pay my; rent, car payment, car insurance, food and gas money, there’s not but ~$400 left and that’s going toward trying to pay my car off early to free up some extra money since it won’t cover an interest pay. My parents cosigned for me and I feel my only options is to screw them, which I’m basically already doing because my loans have to be delinquent to forbear them. I really don’t want to screw over my parents. Right now I feel the only option is to take out a huge life insurance policy and hope I get in a car accident. Any advice would be a huge help I feel I’ve exhausted every option.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Sep, 2011
      Chris
      I have done forbearances with SM a few times while waiting for school to kick in. (I found the only way to defer my $700 a month payments to them is by taking bull**** online classes in order to defer at no interest.) They never told me I had to be delinquent first. I just had to pay the $100 fee and interest would still be charged which tacked on about another $1200. So they lied to you, but that's no shocker. I have good credit and can just about get by paying my bills, but I refuse to pay SM a third of my paycheck each month. I suggest to everyone out there, until we either win the lottery, get higher paying jobs, or SM is struck down by the government (unlikely) that you just go back to public school, take a just enough credits to qualify for in-school deferrments, and work on making yourself a little more stable in order to take on SM. I just take 2 online classes a semester, pay maybe $100-$150 for books, and I can breathe a little bit saving $600 that would be going to the devil-ran company. Because at the end of the day, we signed the papers and committed, and there's just no getting out of it.
      1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2013
      Jacqueline
      This works... Until your private loans cannot be deferred any more. I have been in school since 2003, and I graduate in October (MBA). However, in November of 2012, I was informed by Sallie Mae that private loans have a 5- or 6-year cap on in-school deferments. Now, I am in school, paying down half my $200k debt, wondering what my options will be when my payments go from $780 a month to $2k.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2013
      Bill
      As things stand, there are not a lot of good options for private student loans. The first thing to do is try to work out something with your lender. Sallie Mae is not known for being very flexible, but you have nothing to lose by speaking with them about your income, expenses, and ability to make payment.

      If you can't work out something, if they sue you and get a judgment against you, then you need to know what is the most they can collect from your wages (once you're working), under your state's collection laws. You also want to be aware of whether your bank account is subject to a levy post-judgment.

      It may be better to let them sue you and collect via garnishment than to agree to pay $2000/month.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Lisa
    I don’t even know where to begin.. I started college in 1999 and started out with Sallie Mae and now have 3 other lenders, totaling 4 major loans from my entire college career. I transferred to another school 2 1/2 years later and graduated in 2007 (Took 1 year off). I am in deep, deep debt with school loans equaling out to 100k. My mother co-signed for me and now she hates the fact I even went to college and even worst, hates me b/c I ruined her credit. I feel extremely bad and have sleepless nights/stressful days over this. Because of my tremendous debt and only working part-time after graduating, there is no way I can pay back 100k. I started paying Sallie Mae by giving $100 a month b/c that was all I could afford. I then lost that job and now have another but I feel like whatever I give will never be enough. I have my basic needs such as rent and other bills for day to day living. I don’t spend above my means on anything. After reading all the situations above, I see that bankruptcy is not the best option b/c that was the only thing I could think of to do. I have deferred my loans for many years now. I looked into consolidating, but b/c I have 2 federal loans and 2 private loans, there is no way I can put them altogether and just do one lump sum payment per month. I want to seek a lawyer or a financial expert to find out what is the best thing to do to get this off my mom's back and for me to start paying or wipe it out all together? Sallie Mae does not work with you when you’re this deep in debt with them. I am at my wits end. Please help.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Bill
    I do not have any stunning insights to share regarding your options if you lack income to repay your student loans. See the Bills.com resource Student Loan Payment to see one option that may provide some relief.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2010
    Bill
    Have you tried to qualify for a federal loan? Federal loans are based on need, and your deferment on private loans will not be a factor in the consideration of funding.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2010
    Tammy
    Help!!! Like many others I have a sallie mae signature loan that I received in 1999. It has been in repayment on and off for the last 11 years. I;m back in school and sent my information through the National Clearing House only to receive a letter saying that the maximum in school deferment limit had been reached on the loan. I cannot find information about this anywhere... Of course now they have put this on their website but I have never heard of this before and it has never been mentioned before now. What do I do? I can start repayment on the loan but not for another 2-3 months.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Bill
    You mentioned you are a recent graduate working as a teacher. I realize what I am about to write is of no use to you now, but read the following Bills.com resource to learn how your student loans can be forgiven if you remain employed in the public service field: Public Service Loan Forgiveness.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Aug, 2011
      LaShana
      Public Service Loan Forgiveness is for federal or government loans only... NOT private loans.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Sallie
    Sallie Mae is the WORST company to ever deal with! I am also a recent college grad that has a job in the service industry (teacher). However, my debt to Sallie Mae and the current money I make do not match. The company is UNWILLING to work with ANYONE'S SITUATION..they will transfer you all over the place & yet have one person that can answer my question to give me a smaller loan payment-I'm not saying I won't pay it back, I'm saying I can't pay what they want me to immediately. Sallie Mae calls at LEAST 20 times a day and even though I have pleaded my case over and over about my current income and the amount they want me to pay-they pretty much told me THERE IS NOTHING THEY WILL DO. So, I am stuck with the THREATS from this COMPANY, the HARRASSMENT, and the annoying phone calls due to the high interest rate they charge their so called "customers". I AM TELLING ANYONE WHO IS LOOKING INTO SALLIE MAE TO STOP! They are ripping people off, making young COLLEGE GRADUATES LOSE THEIR MINDS because of the way they choose to run their business. THEY WANT TO TAKE YOUR MONEY! DON"T LET THEM!
    1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      are
      Please know that you can request that they never call you, only email!! they are bound by the Fair Debt Collections law!! I did it, its true. Dont suffer!
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Aug, 2011
      taysha
      OMG. They are harassing me non stop for the same exact signature loan of 3,000 that I cannot pay!!! They told me to get a life and go work at Burger King!!
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    kelli
    Don't pay Sallie Mae! Sallie Mae together with my school is/was a SCAM. First year in college my school Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA gave me enough financial aid for me to get in. I really believe that, that was a way for them to tie my legs to Drexel. Starting second year and on I was forced to take out private student loans. There was no other way. So i took out signature Sallie Mae loans. Two times with around 10K loans each and two times around with 20K loans. One of the loans had a 13.5% - that is like paying for your school with a credit card. I could have just done that. Pay school with credit cards and get them discharged with chapter 7. Anyways, it would take me 5 min over the pay phone to get these loans. I remember calling toll free number on a pay phone. Just like the housing market at one point when people were getting loans left and right it was very easy to get these "great" private student loans too. Now, i see myself and many others struggling with no way out of this. This tells me that my school and salli mae is a scam. Yes, it is just business - but my school and salli mae's business is to take care of its students too. Now, since I feel cheated here is what I plan on doing. - 1. I plan on not paying a cent to sallie mae. 2. My loan will go default. 3. I will get sued. I have no assets. They can't come after my wages in Pennsylvania (thank god). They can come after my bank accounts (checking and savings) and I plan on moving out of the country anyway. 4. Credit history will be ruined. I just got discharged from my other loans through Chapter 7 bankruptcy. With bankruptcy on my credit for the next 10 years there is no point to protect my credit history. I can't buy a home or car or credit cards or anything. So I am bankrupt - i have no money for anything. 5. Moving out of the country and just travel until the SOL runs out which I think is about 4-6 years. - This is my way - sticking it to sallie mae and I really really feel sorry for sallie mae but it is just business. - If I were to go back - I would have never gone to a private college. Community college for 2 years and then a state school. Trust me on that. Don't be fooled by their marketing tactics. If I were to go back - If I had available credit on my credit cards I would have tried to turn that credit into cash and pay as much as possible of my private student loans. Then file for chapter 7. Since I don't have these options any longer I am just going to default with my private student loans. I also have government student loans - but I am going to keep paying them. And thank god i didn't consolidate. They are only 2%. My friends who consolidated they got screwed - just another corporate scam.
    1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    Bill
    Sheila: It is unclear to me if the derogatory information you describe on your credit report is accurate or not. According to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, accurate derogatory information can appear on a credit report for 7½ years after the date of first delinquency. A bankruptcy can appear for 10 years. If the information on your credit report is inaccurate, dispute the inaccurate entries. If the inaccurate information is not removed consult with an attorney in your state who has experience litigating consumer rights issues. If disputing inaccurate entries in your credit report does not remove them you have a cause of action (the basis for a lawsuit) against the credit reporting agencies and the collection agents responsible for the report(s).
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    Sheila
    I am in the same situation as William, I am a co-signer of a signature loan for my son's education back in 2001. I declared chapter 7 Bankruptcy in 2004 and included this loan in the papers. The trustee said that student loans were not dischargeable, but I thought she meant my Stafford Loans and I considered the Signature loan gone, becasue it was private. When they came after me again, I hired an attorney to write a letter and the Sallie Mae response includes a statement that the loan I co-signed was indeed a "private loan with a variable interest rate." Note that my Bankruptcy occurred prior to the changes in the code and in fact they have stopped calling me or harrassing me, however, the item still appears on my credit report. My son is responsible for the loan, but unfortunately has been unable to pay due to health issues. So the original $20,000 loan is now reported at $57,000. Talking to Sallie Mae is out of the question, as they refuse to acknowledge any bankruptcy, though they were served the discharge paperwork. Two of the CRA's continue to report it, and one reports it two times under different account numbers. We are approaching 6 years and I have been turned down for a mortgage, and other help because of this issue. I believe that i am in the right in this loan with Sallie Mae given their admittance that the loan was private, and against the two CRA's who continue to side with Sallie Mae. Unlike William I have proof that it was a private loan. What do you think?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Bill
    Read the Bills.com resource Collections Advice to understand your rights in the collections process. I also recommend you read Debt Negotiation and Settlement Advice. Your best course of action is to continue to try to work out a payment plan with the creditor, and communicate to them that as your personal financial picture improves you will become current on your payments.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    vanna
    about 3 years ago i took a $2,000 private loan from sallie mae for school. i'm barely making it with my part-time job. they've been aggressivley harassing me to pay them back in full. but i can't. and now they are threatening me that they will take me to court. my question is, can they really do that? please help me because not only do i NOT have the money but i definately cannot afford court fees on top of what i already owed.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Zed
    9 years of higher education in us and Mexico that cost $175,000 and no job? after spending that much money and being in school for that long, i would expect something more than unemployment. i can't imagine how the co-signer feels.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Bill
    The discrepancy you see on the Sallie Mae Web site as compared to the contract you signed is not relevant -- the agreement you executed is what governs your relationship with the creditor and on not what the creditor posts on its Web site years after the fact. Beyond that observation I have no meaningful response to your message. Readers?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Jeremy
    Hey there. First off, the numbers. 7 loans over the course of 9 or so years to pay for education. Total is 175K or so, but due to some serious mismanagement (ie. deferments, lots of deferments)it has ballooned to 230K. The loans are Signature Student Loans, taken out with an American co-signer. I say American co-signer because I am a Brazilian national and actually have no ties to the United States. Part of my education was done in the US, but under a student visa. The rest was done in Mexico under a student visa as well. The thing is, when I check Sallie Mae's website to get official details on the type of loan these are, I can't find any reference to the Signature Student Loan. Have they changed the name or eliminated it altogether? It looks like it's been renamed or replaced by the Smart option student loan. In any case, under all the requirements I can find on the website it's always stipulated that borrowers NEED to be either US citizens or permanent residents, or foreign nationals studying within US territory. For several of the loans I am neither. Is it me or does this seem a little irregular, to say the least? Anyhow, the loan (I'm going to refer to them all as the single, soul-crushing creature they have become) is entering delinquency and neither my co-signer nor myself are employed at the moment. I'm thinking of trying to reason with Sallie Mae, explain that nobody can make payments now in the monthly amounts they want (about 1600USD). I'm also thinking of asking them to settle, if my partner can get a different loan (on better terms, and not through SLM). Neither my partner nor I have ties to the US and aren't even on US territory. My co-signer is still in American territory I can only imagine they will try to take everything he's got if the thing defaults. Then they will come after me. That's it. Questions? Comments? Suggestions? Anything would be most appreciated.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Bill
    There are few options for people in financial distress who have student loans. The two most common options -- deferment and forbearance -- merely postpone repayment. However, the original answer above seeks to explore all options including ones that may not be the most sound financially. As such, I do not think it is fair to call the information misguided because it includes appropriate caveats.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    keepontruckin
    While the information provided here is accurate, it is truly misguided. You NEVER want to borrow against your home. If you lose that--you are HOMELESS. An extended repayment option?? That means you pay thousands and thousands of dollars extra in interest. Not to mention, extra years of debt!! Student loan repayment was never meant to extend as long as a mortgage repayment. Oh, and I love how positive the answers all are "This won't help much", and "that won't help much". Way to make someone, like me, who is already at the end of the rope with trying to stay current on these obligations, feel like offing themselves.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Bill
    Stay in contact with Sallie Mae regarding your finances. Relief -- eventually -- may be headed your way and I suggest that writing to the executive branches of government may not be the most fruitful use of your time. Congress would be a better choice. See the Bills.com news story, "Obama calls for help with debt relief on student loans."
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Britni
    I owe Sallie Mae around 100k in private loans (Tuition Answer Loans and Signature Loans). I've looked into the ICB repayment program and will apply this summer when my Direct loans go into repayment. As of right now, my monthly amount due to Sallie Mae is a little over $1300. I bring in a little less than 2000 a month. When I asked them if they had any kind of income/hardship program that stated they could only offer me an interest only plan which would bring my monthly payments to $573 a month. Considering I have rent ($750), utilities and credit card debit not to mention a separate student loan through Chase that I pay $114 a month, giving them $573 a month is never going to happen. You cant get blood from a turnip. Even worse, the $25-50 I send to them a month isn't even applied to my balance (which is currently in default of over $4500). They cash my checks and accept my online payments but they are setting the money aside until the amount equals what I owe and only then will they apply it. I've questioned if this is legal....basically in total (including federal and private student loans) I owe around 200k. I just graduated June 2009. I was unemployed for a year a half before I received temp work last March. I'm now permanent but my take home is 22k...I've already accepted the fact that I will be paying off Sallie Mae for the rest of my life BUT unless I start making +80k a year there is no way I will ever be able to pay the expected monthly payments. I will be writing a letter to the President and to the Gov of IL. Any ideas of anything else I can do?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      nell
      Britni, I am in the exact same situation.....what have you done so far? Found anything/anyone to help?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Ashley
      Any word on what is happening with your student loan now....I'm in the same boat and would like some advice!
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Bill
    I would be extremely surprised if you were directed to use the local DAs address in the place of Sallie Mae's address. The DA is busy enough as it is, and does not have the time or personnel to forward mail to creditors. If you are not doing so already, consult with an attorney in your state who is experienced in bankruptcy. If you are bound and determined to file bankruptcy yourself -- and I don't recommend it -- at least get yourself a good book to help you. I have always been impressed with the quality of the Nolo Press line of books. There's an old adage in law that comes to mind: "A person who defends himself has a fool for a client."
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Alice
    I took out a Sallie Mae Loan over $5,000. I had to file bankruptcy due to an over whelming amount of bills including Sallie Mae. On the bankruptcy form it had an area to place Salle Mae and to submit the address as the District Attorney's Office. I was notified by my trustee that this loan cannot be included in my bankruptcy case. Please clear this up for me. Thanks, Alice
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Bill
    You mentioned you have a court date approaching. If you have an attorney, I suggest you discuss the issues you mentioned with him or her. If not, I urge you to contact the bar association in your county and learn how to reach the organization in your area that provides legal aid to people with limited income. If you are representing yourself in your court proceedings, remember the old adage, "He who represents himself has a fool for a client" -- in other words, get an attorney. Regarding your question whether a previously decided issue can be re-argued, that depends on the issue and if any new evidence is relevant to the issue. Regarding the nature of your loan, if a signature loan is a student loan (Sallie Mae's Web site does not specifically address if its signature loans are student loans), then I suggest you review the Income-Based Repayment (IBR) program.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    William
    I have Sallie Mae Signature Private Loans that were taken out in 1999-2001. I subsequently filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2002 due to other dept. I did not know at the time that there was a difference between these signature "private" loans and Federal loans in terms of dischargeability. My attorney didn't ask either. I just told him that they were student loans which he replied were nondischargeable. They were however, still listed along with other unsecured dept in the bankruptcy. From what I know now, one, Sallie Mae was making these loans completely without any government guarantee. They were in the process of privatization (1997-2004), and had organized into subsidiaries, similar to how GM is broken down into Chevrolet, Buick, etc. Their new logo was SLM Corp. Any loans made by SLM Corp except Federal loans were like making loans with any private bank, because you were actually dealing with a subsidiary. One subsidiary handled private loans (and continues to do so), and others handled Federal loans, and still others handled other products and services, such as collections, under the new parent name of SLM Corp. Second, the 2005 Bankruptcy Reform Act, specifically added language to make sure that no type of student loan could be discharged, specifically to close this non guaranteed gap and insure they had absolutely no risk in making these private loans. This is further illustrated, thirdly, by legislation that Sen Durbin (D-Ill), tried to push through in 2007 and is trying again this year, 2009, to reverse the effects of the 2005 Bankruptcy Act - to allow the discharge of private student loans. This is in light of the disparity of the increased cost of going to school, the fact that federal loans have not kept up with that increase, and that students must now turn to private loans to fill the gap. If this is the case, if there was no law stopping discharge of private loans prior to 2005, then I should not have any private loan dept. My Signature private loans were automatically discharged in 2002 along with my other dept. In a suit against me, in 2007, however, as these loans had defaulted, a court did side with Sallie Mae on this point, dispite my argument that they were private and without knowing what I know now. Their attorney, just stated, that Sallie Mae was still under a federal charter and thus the Signature loans were not really "private". Since I had nothing more at the time to argue the point, I had a Judgment made against me and 18 months later, this past August 2009, my wages started to be garnished and continue. I have requested a stay of garnishment, and the court date is coming up, based again, that theses loans were not even in existence when the judgment was made two years ago (they were private loans and discharged in 2002), there are federal laws that now cap repayment on other student loans types (why not theses?), and the fact that my family of six is living now below the federal poverty level. I am 57 with a young family, and this will force us to live at this level for most of the rest of my life, if I live beyond 87, and I still have federal student loan dept. My question is can one resurrect an argument in court, namely the point as to whether or not the private loans were discharged in 2002. The court ruled that they were not private loans in 2007, but without all the evidence. I know that normally you can not get a second ruling, but this is a ruling as to whether or not something existed. If it didn't it just didn't. Also, what about hardship? Do not the courts take into account that you will live in poverty for the rest of your life? Is this what the Constitution meant when it talked about pursuit of happiness and a fresh start? Thank you, Nick
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2009
    Bill
    I don't have a detailed suggestion for you regarding the signature loan because you don't mention the lender or the terms. If you have any significant assets, perhaps you can use them as security to refinance the loan. If you have a good repayment history and a steady job, perhaps you can ask a relative to co-sign on a refinance, which will almost certainly lower your rate. Regarding what you consider the school's misrepresentation of fees owed for unattended semesters, I recommend you bring all of your documentation regarding this matter to an attorney, and ask him or her to draft a letter to the school demanding a partial refund for the semesters you were unable to attend. If you cannot afford an attorney, contact the bar association in your county to learn if there is a legal aid organization that helps people with little or no income. See PayOff Student Loans for more in-depth information on paying student loans.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2009
    Matt
    I am dealing with a situation where I took out a signature loan for school and have had the interest rate continually fluctuate. I attempted to restructure the loan with them to no avail. To make the situation worse, I didnt even get to finish school due to medical issues which prevented me from being able to continue. The school (IADT of Tampa) assured me I would not be liable for the payment for the un-attended semesters, but when it came time for the bill, it turned out to be a false promise. Do I have any legal recourse in this matter? My interest rate has fluctuated between 13 and 18+% and I will never be able to get out of this how its going.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2009
    Evan
    Unfortunately the official answer above is not very helpful to the majority of people out there now. 8 of the 10 lenders arent even offering consolidation on private loans and haven't been since last year, so thats off the table for the most part. Your best bet would be to place your state loans (if you have them) on forbearance, and then ask for an interest only term of 2 years on the current balance of the private loans. That will at least drastically reduce your payment in the short term until 1. the economy turns around and more consolidation options become avail...or 2. You can make the payment with your future salary. State loans offer a lot of forbearance and even some deference if you can prove it. Unfortunately Sallie Mae is making forbearance nearly impossible/not worth it on the private so you can forget about that to. Also, you are likely dealing with Sallie Mae's collection department at this point, and those people are known to be unflexible. You need to get up to date on your current payment or try and talk to a representative about your immediate payment options before they transfer you to collections, which they will do as soon as they see your account is supposed to be routed there.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2009
    Bill
    Unfortunately, I do not know one in particular, but you can use services such as http://www.lawyers.com/ or http://www.attorneyfind.com/
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2009
    Kristina
    I am experiencing the same situation with Sallie Mae. Could you give me a name of a attorney who could help me go over some possible options for repayment before I will have consider looking into bankruptcy. Thank you!
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Sharon
      I already filed Chapter 13 and my lawyer said that I need to write up notes and give them to him if I want to add it to the bankruptcy. I am on disability too. What should I put in the notes?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Bill
      I am uncertain what the "it" is that you want to add to your Chapter 13. I will guess, based on the context of your question, you are referring to a disability that is making it impossible for you to work. First, see Title 11, Chapter 5, Subchapter II, § 523 (a)(8) to read the "undue hardship" language in the federal bankruptcy statute. What does § 523 (a)(8) mean to the courts? Some bankruptcy courts follow a three-part test of what "undue hardship" means from the Second Circuit case Brunner v. New York State Higher Education Services, Corp, 831 F.2d 395 (2d Cir. 1987). The test requires the debtor to make a three-part showing:
      1. The debtor’s current financial status does not permit him or her to maintain a minimal standard of living for him or herself and his or her dependents if forced to repay the loan
      2. The debtor’s financial status is likely to persist for a significant portion of the repayment period; and
      3. The debtor made a good faith effort to repay the loan.

      Your lawyer is looking for evidence to prove each of the three elements I just mentioned from the Brunner test.

      Second, see the Dept. of Education pages Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) Discharge, and Loan Cancellation & Discharge to understand the Dept. of Education's criteria for canceling a federal student loan. If your loans are federal, then you may want to discuss with your lawyer pursuing loan cancellation as a parallel tactic.

      0 Votes